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BETA.ø, Tennisschule, Madrid

Mimicry in Madrid: Tennis school office by BETA.ø

In the planning of the new buildings, every single tree on the tennis and padel school grounds was taken into account, and thus it was also out of consideration for the vegetation that the office and storage area specified in the brief was divided up there and then into two separate volumes, positioned among the trees to form a new small intermediate space. The architects also gave the buildings a simple, hut-like geometry as a reminder of simple life in harmony with nature.

One of the buildings contains the office and a service counter, while the other is a storage space for equipment.  The office consists of a single room in which all surfaces are lined in pine plywood panelling, thus underscoring the unity of the fixtures and the interior space; at the same time, the room is fully glazed on one side, opening it up to the surroundings.  Two side rooms are divided off from the storage building, where the interior is much more functional in character. Here the interior is lined in waterproofed plasterboard, faced in sheets of embossed steel up to the height of the door lintels for a durable and wear-proof effect.

The two huts are identical in terms of structural design. The outer walls are formed out of phenolic boards and oxidised steel panels with an intermediate insulation layer, and were prefabricated in 3 x 5 metre modules and transported to the site. The steel panels overlap each other like scales and cover not only the walls but also the whole of the roofs. Each building has also been provided a second skin of oxidised steel mesh as a support for climbing plants; this means the huts will soon be completely covered in growth, thus fully integrating them into the scenery.  Thanks to the rust-red colour of the oxidised steel walls, the buildings will also mimic the hues of the surrounding trees in autumn.

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